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Description - Tuberculosis and the Victorian Literary Imagination by Katherine Byrne

Tuberculosis was a widespread and deadly disease which devastated the British population in the nineteenth century: consequently it also had a huge impact upon public consciousness. This text explores the representations of tuberculosis in nineteenth-century literature and culture. Fears about gender roles, degeneration, national efficiency and sexual transgression all play their part in the portrayal of 'consumption', a disease which encompassed a variety of cultural associations. Through an examination of a range of Victorian texts, from well-known and popular novels by Charles Dickens and Elizabeth Gaskell to critically neglected works by Mrs Humphry Ward and Charles Reade, this work reveals the metaphors of illness which surrounded tuberculosis and the ways those metaphors were used in the fiction of the day. The book also contains detailed analysis of the substantial body of writing by nineteenth-century physicians which exists about this disease, and examines the complex relationship between medical 'fact' and literary fiction.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780521766678
ISBN-10: 0521766672
Format: Hardback
(228mm x 152mm x 20mm)
Pages: 242
Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publish Date: 25-Nov-2010
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Katherine Byrne

Katherine Byrne is Lecturer in English at the University of Ulster.

Books By Katherine Byrne